located on the Stephenville North and South Texas Railroad 13 miles
north of Hamilton, 7 miles
south of Carlton and 4 miles
from the Leon River. An auction for
the sale of lots in the new town of Spurlin, a project of John L
Spurlin, was held 21 November, 1908, in front of the Spurlin Depot
Special trains from Stephenville and Hamilton
to the auction. Excursion fare to attend the auction was twenty-five cents
from Carlton, forty cents from Hamilton,
fifty cents from Alexander,
and ninety cents from Stephenville.
C. H. King, P. M. Massingill, Minnie Pietzsch, William Joseph
"Joe" Stribling, W. W. Parker, W. C. Schrank, Walter Richardson,
A. Boatwright, A. A. Henry, August Weid, Mrs. A. B. Barnett, J. B. Womble,
H. R. Brummett, and many more bought property and paid from $1.00 to
$40.00 for the lots.
Spurlin had a
gin, drug store, blacksmith shop, grocery, general merchandise store,
lodge hall, Baptist tabernacle, and Methodist Church. The
gin had a manually operated press. A tornado (cyclone) on 29 September,
1917, did much damage to most of the buildings in the town of Spurlin. The
Methodist Church was scattered all over the countryside, but its
piano was left on the church foundation. September 29, 1917, was the day
my maternal grandparents, Robert Jeff Fergusson and his
wife, Ida Rose Anna Grisham Fergusson with their children, William
Claude and Clara Elsie were moving into a two-story house in Spurlin.
Aware that a storm was brewing in the afternoon, but preoccupied with
trying to move all of their possessions inside the house and in corralling
their animals and poultry, they did not realize the speed of the
approaching storm. As they left their house, it was struck by the tornado
shifting the west end of the two-story house into the air and burying the
east end in the ground. If they had left their house earlier, they might
have been injured by the wind which had taken away their smoke house which
was on the path to the cellar. A few days after the storm Jeff and Ida
moved their family back to Blue Ridge.
The horseless carriage contributed to
the demise of Spurlin. Gone are the railroad, stores, churches, and
people. The site of Spurlin is now a farm marked only by the
crumbling brick walls of the school .